Saturday, October 3, 2009

October 3--One year later

**WARNING--Some of these pictures are graphic**

Benjamin is growing and developing great these days. Physically, he's able to do quite a bit. I'm amazed at how well he is doing.

Sometimes life does seem just like a day in the park.





Of course, one year ago today, on October 3, 2008, things were not at all gleeful.

At 7:30 a.m., I handed him over to the nurses at Vanderbilt Children's Hospital.



And he had his heart fixed.



It took my breath away to see this picture again.



And to think of how far we've come.

Sure, life isn't all a day in the park. Even when we're at the park, I see children Benjamin's age running around and going up and down stairs and down slides unassisted.

Even though that part isn't as hard as the fact that he's so terribly behind verbally.

And he always will be.

But you know what?

It's okay.

Even though as I'm typing this I have tears rolling down my cheeks because no matter how okay with it I am, it still saddens me, it's still okay.

I have so much to be thankful for.

I can hear Benjamin playing with his toys in his playpen in the next room.

I can hear loud banging and cars crashing upstairs in the bonus room where Andrew is.

I can see Matthew across the room working on the dishes from our dinner last night.

It is a beautiful, crisp autumn day.

God's mercies truly are new each morning. His love surely is all I need.

It's okay.

In fact, somedays, it's more than okay.

It's a day in the park.

32 comments:

Hector and Jennifer Varanini Sanchez said...

Beautiful post!

Beth Chappelear said...

I am officially bawling. But the post is beautiful Angela, and I never fail to admire your faith and strength.

Valerie said...

B is just PERFECT! I also have trouble looking at the surgery pics. So much emotion. I love your attitude. B is so blessed to have you as a mom!

Tonya said...

Your boys are gorgeous! Love and faith can go soooooo far.........congrats on the newest addition!

Amanda said...

Angela,

Benjamin has come along way...The pics are so meaningful...I can't believe OHS was a year ago. Look at him standing so well...

Amanda

Sarah said...

When I see those pics I remember your feeling aches over when would you see him smile again.

Its great to see those great smiles on him.

Ellye-K Designs said...

That picture took my breath away as well. I think it always will because any mother can see and think how they'd feel if their own were enduring such. But you and Benjamin are a testament to the fact that we do just that....endure. You are an amazing mother Angela! God bless you and every member of your sweet family!!!!

Monica Crumley said...

Beautiful post. I'm sure handing him over to the docs was very difficult and seeing him afterwards took my breath away, too. But look at him today. You are so blessed!

kristi said...

Wow. I so understand how you feel.

Adrienne said...

Great post! I think it's definitely going to be more than okay!

Todd and Courtney said...

Such a sweet post. Benjamin and Andrew are so precious and I hope we can meet up one day. Diana and I got together at the aquarium this week & it was wonderful! Hope to see you soon!!

The Soldatke family said...

That was beautiful. And you're right; as much as it saddens us; it also still breaks your heart. But it's okay. We have our hope in the Lord. And these special kids of ours bring us blessings we never knew existed!

Beverly said...

Ben is so beautiful!

Diana said...

The air is crisp and clean and things feel calm. I hope that this wonderful feeling helps remind you of how far you have come and how wonderful this fall with be with no surgeries and no recoveries and Benjamin will continue to amaze you and the world. I love you and those sweet boys!

Tricia said...

Touching post. It's hard sometimes to remember to be OK when evidence around you suggests you shouldn't. But the truth of God's love and mercy shine through those hard times, too. God bless. Glad you made it through this last long year. I hope the next one is better. :)

Juliet said...

Angela,

God shines so brightly through you! I miss you so much and I really want to hang out with you guys! Your boys are getting so big! Love, Juliet...Also..tell Matthew he is really missing out on your bog :) I love it!

Juliet said...

Angela,

God shines so brightly through you! I miss you so much and I really want to hang out with you guys! Your boys are getting so big! Love, Juliet...Also..tell Matthew he is really missing out on your bog :) I love it!

Juliet said...

Angela,

God shines so brightly through you! I miss you so much and I really want to hang out with you guys! Your boys are getting so big! Love, Juliet...Also..tell Matthew he is really missing out on your bog :) I love it!

Maureen said...

What a sweet post.

JILL said...

I just keep scrolling back and forth between that boy in the swing and standing on his own to the tiny baby dwarfed with wires and tubes. So many changes have occured in 12 short months. It is hard not to compare your child to other children the same age, but look just at B and compare him to himself... and celebrate his glorious accomplishments! And, I know the feeling of being behind verbally, but I'm sure you know it too... you can receive nonverbal messages from your boy that are better than any word uttered.

Laura said...

It is amazing how far Benjamin has come! I am so glad that you get to enjoy every day with him!

jmason said...

Benjamin looks so big in the swing pic! He's really come a long way...great post!

Laurie said...

So perfectly said, Angela. Ah, just seeing that picture of Benjamin with the vent and the tubes...hit way too close to home and instantly brought tears to my eyes :(

He is looking SO well now! And how did I miss the fact that he is now STANDING??!!! Awesome!!!

count it all joy said...

Oh Angela, Benjamin Braveheart indeed! He AND you are just amazing. I hate to think of you sitting there with tears rolling down your face....brought tears to my own eyes. I'm sending you over a big Aussie bear hug right now.

It reminds me of Mother Theresa's saying "I know God won't give me more than I can handle, I just wish sometimes that He didn't trust me so much."

Thank goodness you are the wise, resourceful woman that you are. Please let me know if there are ever any specific issues that I can pray about for you. Meredith xo.

count it all joy said...

Hey! I just noticed that on your screen, the photo of Benjamin is hospital is positioned right next to the "Miracles Happen" button. I love that! Meredith xo.

Sara said...

I love you guys.

The O'Neils said...

Know that B's story gives me hope. I look at him and think of P in a year. I am amazed at your strength. He is such an angel and a miracle!! {{big hugs}}

The Wood Family said...

Angela,
Just a heads up...I have nominated you for a Kreativ Blogger Award!

LauraF said...

Angela,
As always, you are so wonderfully inspiring. You're a beautiful person, and I'm so pleased to 'know' you.

Thank you for sharing yourself and your thoughts with us :)

[Mrs.F]

mlfont said...

beautiful post Angela! the surgery post terrifies me, but look at where you are now! I draw strength from all you ladies that have traveled the path before me! Anticipating God's best!

The other me said...

Oh what a beautiful boy he is, my sister is in her 30s and still a joy to all those around her, she didn't walk til she was nearly 4 and look at your Benjamin! He is astounding and strong and as perfect as ever he could be. Someone told me once that any family who is blessed enough to welcome a Down's baby into their lives will have an automatic entry into heaven, so special are they in the Lord's eyes. I could look at pictures of your boys all day long! Helen.

Mary Jo said...

Awesome post! It is so true that we can know that things are OK yet still be sad and grieve from time to time. People end up so stuck emotionally when they don't realize that - when they think it has to be all happy or all sad in a situation. As usual you have such a wonderful honesty and perspective on things. Love ya - MJ